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  Visa Information

You can now apply for an electronic visa online at the following link

Apply for Visa here
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The Sacretary of State presents his compliments to Their Exellencies and Messicurs and Mesdames the Chief of Mission and has the honor to inform them that the offices of the U.S. government will be closed on the following dates in 2019 in observance of the indicated holidays: here

Embassy of the Kingdom of Lesotho

2511 Massachusetts
Avenue, N.W. Washington, DC, 20008

Tel.: 1-202-797-5533
Fax 1-202-234-6815

Detailed Contacts


Why Invest In Lesotho - Access to Markets

Lesotho is a member of two regional trade agreements, which are Southern African Customs Union (SACU) and Southern African Development Community (SADC). There are other arrangements outside the region which include the agreement with the EU under the Cotonou and the US under the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA). Almost all Lesotho’s exports receive better than most-favoured nations (MFN) treatment to these markets.

Lesotho is connected to South Africa by road, to the South African rail network (via Maseru to Bloemfontein) and air (from Moshoeshoe 1 International Airport in Maseru to Oliver Tambo International Airport in Gauteng). Lesotho is close to a number of modern South African facilities which are essential for any export drive.

Getting to Lesotho from South Africa by Road
Maseru to Johannesburg 455km
Maseru to Durban 550km
Maseru to Bloemfontein 155km
Maseru to Cape Town 1,165km
Maseru to Port Elizabeth 738km

The main centre of manufacturing is Maseru, which is 20 kilometres from the South African town of Ladybrand. The next biggest centre of manufacturing is Maputsoe / Ha Nyenye which is less than 10 kilometres from the Free State town of Ficksburg. There are two other centers; one in Mafeteng (closest South African town is Wepener), and another in Mohale’s Hoek (closest South African town, Zastron).

1.1.1. SACU
This is a customs union of five states; Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa, and Swaziland. Under this Customs Union, members enjoy duty-free access to market while on the other hand extending a common External Tariff against imports from the rest of the world. Lesotho also as a member of SACU is benefiting from the free trade agreement concluded between South Africa and EU, the Trade Development and Cooperation Agreement (TDCA). Since South Africa is a member of SACU, the TDCA de facto has to be implemented by other SACU Member States which Lesotho is in accession.

1.1.2. SADC
All SACU member States are members of SADC. Under this regional group, Lesotho has some duty concessions in the SADC Member States. A SADC Trade Protocol came into operation in 2000 with the intention of moving to a Free Trade Area in 2008. In this regard, tariffs which will remain after 2008 will be on those goods that are regarded sensitive, but those tariffs should be eliminated or be fully liberalized by 2012. In a nutshell, SADC is progressing well on the road to trade integration and the following targets dates still remain on the road map towards full regional integration; Customs Union in 2010, Common Market in 2015, Monetary Union in 2016 and single currency in 2018.

1.1.3. Cotonou
Lesotho has been enjoying preferential access into the EU market through different Lome Conventions for twenty-five years which ran until 2000 when it was replaced by Cotonou Agreement (CA). Under the CA, Lesotho is classified as a least developed country and its status is enhanced by the EU’s Everything But Arms (EBA) initiative. Under this initiative Lesotho enjoys quota and duty-free access to the EU market for everything except arms. In addition there are no requirements for reciprocating preferential trading access to the EU. Since the non-reciprocal aspects of the ACP-EU is not WTO compliant, the CA makes provision for the EU to enter into economic partnership agreements (EPAs) with ACP countries in order to satisfy WTO requirements. Since the existing system of preferences will continue to apply for a period of eight years before reciprocity come into effect, Lesotho and other six SADC Member States are negotiating as a block EPAs with the EU.

1.1.4. AGOA (African Growth and Opportunity Act)
Enacted in 2000 and set to expire in September 2015, AGOA is a trade preference program that seeks to promote economic development in 49 sub-Saharan African countries by allowing eligible countries to expert qualifying goods to United States without import duties. The Act requires the U. S. Government to conduct an annual eligibility review to assess each country’s progress on economic, political and development reform objectives in order to be eligible for AGOA benefits. AGOA also requires an annual forum to foster closer economic ties between the United States and sub-Saharan African countries Government Accountability Office (GAO - February 2015) The forums usually alternate between United States and the sub-Saharan African countries with various themes. AGOA was renewed for ten (10) years (2015-2025), the longest extension ever since its enactment and the President of the United States, Barack Obama signed this Act into law on 29 June 2015. The new legislation has come with some new interesting sections: Section: 106. Promotion of the role of women in social, political and economic development in sub-Saharan Africa Section: 107. Biennial AGOA utilization strategies

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